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Mamacitas Cafe: Doughnut Kebabs and Youth Empowerment

December 7, 2015
There is nothing in life that cannot be improved with doughnut kebabs. Of this much I am certain. These delightful pastries are the signature dish of Mamacitas Cafe, a program that provides entrepreneurship training for young women who face significant barriers to opportunity and/or employment. After years spent as a…

Campesino Power: Whole Foods, Driscoll’s Berries, and Farm Labor

December 7, 2015
Article Type: Farms, Food Justice
“Hey hey ho ho, Driscoll Berry’s has got to go!” “Whole Foods, Driscoll’s, you can’t hide. We can see your greedy side.” Shoppers visiting the high-end grocery store in downtown Los Angeles on Friday, December 4th are greeted by a thicket of protest signs. Ramon Torres, a farmworker labor organizer,…

Small Farms, Big Appetites: Small-Scale Farming Can (and should) Feed the World

December 1, 2015
Article Type: Farms
Schools in N’Ganon, a small village in the Ivory Coast, had a problem. Children were leaving to go home for lunch, or wasting the poor quality food offered by the public canteen. For villager Mariam Ouattara Adiarratou, the problem presented an opportunity. She petitioned the village chiefs and was granted…

WOW Farm in Oakland: Tackling Youth Employment through Arugula (and Flowers)

December 1, 2015
Article Type: Farms, Industry Insights
In a triangle of greenery at the terminus of 7th and Peralta in West Oakland, California, six young people are seated along a picnic table, going over final preparations for a series of mock interviews with a small cohort of volunteers. They’re focused, but the atmosphere is loose, peals of…

Jian Bing Johnny’s and the Food Bike Revolution

November 23, 2015
Article Type: Industry Insights
The food bike revolution is here. The streets of the Oakland and Berkeley have seen their share of street food innovation. But even to residents accustomed to all manner of mobile food, Jian Bing Johnny’s still catches the eye, a bright red food cart drawn by bicycle selling Chinese street…

La Cocina Food and Entrepreneurship Conference: A Few Thoughts

November 10, 2015
Article Type: Industry Insights
The La Cocina Food and Entrepreneurship Conference, held in San Francisco on November 7th and 8th, was not one of those “I spent hundreds of dollars to shake hands with strangers and eat a terrible boxed lunch and pick up a tote bag with nothing of any significant value gained”…

Getting the Word Out: The Joys and Challenges of Local Marketing

November 2, 2015
Article Type: Industry Insights
Audrey Levatino is the farmer/owner of Ted’s Last Stand Farm and Gardens in rural Virginia. In a recent interview with Living on Earth, she underscored the challenges of managing her sustainable farm that provides local markets throughout the Charlottesville area with cut flowers, specialty vegetables, and herbs, while also raising…